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"The summer night was settling upon the neighborhood like a dark lace veil, casting dappled shadows on the roofs, sidewalks and lawns." ~Victoria Kahler

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Today's Town Snapshots:

Land O' Lakes, Florida

Pretty Land O' Lakes is a quiet place, dotted with bodies of water and shaded neighborhoods. It also has a couple of nudist resorts.

The Groves: a 55+ Community in Land O' Lakes, Florida   

An established community, The Groves has single family homes, patio homes, town homes, an 18 hole golf course and an abundance of open space.

Scroll down to see more towns!

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Bay St. Louis, Mississippi

Bay St. Louis is a low key town that sits amid rivers, marshes and estuaries along the Bay of St. Louis and the Gulf of Mexico.

Rockaway Beach, Oregon

A peaceful, casual place with mountains on its east side and seven miles of often empty beach on its west side, Rockaway Beach is a world unto itself.

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Latest Town Snapshots:

Matlacha, Florida

Mellow Matlacha, cute and a slightly ramshackle, is an old fishing village that completely covers a little island just off Florida's western coast.

Matlacha Cottages: a Cozy Resort in Matlacha, Florida

Tucked between motels and seafood eateries, this quaint resort has colorful cottages and waterfront views.

Holden Beach, North Carolina

Little Holden Beach has a mature population and is known for its windswept oceanfront beaches and a dramatic bridge that rises over the Intracoastal Waterway.

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College Station, Texas   

In the Brazos Valley deep in the heart of Texas, College Station grew up around the railroad and is home to sprawling Texas A&M University.

Latest In Depth Review:

Peachtree City, Georgia

Well planned and well managed, award-winning Peachtree City is outside of Atlanta. It is serene, suburban and comfortable, boasting quiet, safe neighborhoods, plentiful amenities and a rich quality of life. It is a great retirement spot!

Latest Town Snapshots:

Apollo Beach, Florida

Quiet Apollo Beach is not far from Tampa and has canal-laced neighborhoods, good seafood restaurants, a manatee festival and more.

Southshore Falls: a Handsome 55+ Community in Apollo Beach, Florida   

This development has single family homes and attached homes, ponds, canals, a putting green and tropical landscaping.

Woodstock, Georgia  

Outside of Atlanta and well manicured, Woodstock is fast-growing with a nice downtown, a farmers' market and nearby lake recreation.

Post Falls, Idaho  

Nestled in Idaho's scenic Panhandle, Post Falls sits along the Spokane River and boasts safe neighborhoods and close-at-hand lake recreation.

Latest Short Review:

New Smyrna Beach, Florida

The mellow seaside hamlet of New Smyrna Beach is on the northeastern Florida coast and boasts a long clean beach, excellent water recreation, an artsy vibe and a cute downtown. Is it a great place to retire?

Latest Town Snapshots:

Coral Springs, Florida

Bordered by Everglades National Park, Coral Springs started out as a master planned development and today is known for its well managed government and rich quality of life.

Heron Bay: a Master Planned Community in Coral Springs, Florida   

Laced with canals and dotted with manicured grounds, Heron Bay has single family homes, condos, town homes and a TPC golf course.

Blacksburg, Virginia  

In the scenic Appalachian Mountains, bucolic Blacksburg is the setting for Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University (Virginia Tech) and is a classic college town.

Slab City, California  

Known as the "last free place in America," Slab City is a squatter settlement that is home a a sizeable number of RV "snowbirds" and people who want to live off the grid.

Latest In Depth Review:

Eugene, Oregon

Mellow, funky and lush, Eugene is home to the University of Oregon and boasts a vibrant cultural scene, an academic vibe and a progressive temperment. Coffeeshops, pubs, festivals, bicycles and Birkenstocks are all in good supply. It is a great retirement spot!

Latest Town Snapshots:

Tavares, Florida

Mellow Tavares bills itself as "America's Seaplane City" and borders four large lakes with several smaller ones within its borders.

Royal Harbor: a 55+ Lakeside Community in Tavares, Florida   

This waterfront community has single level, single family homes (some with a boat dock), a clubhouse and an activities director.

Palmer Lake, Colorado  

Tucked against the majestic Rocky Mountains in central Colorado, little Palmer Lake exudes a mountain vibe and boasts sweeping views.

Port Costa, California  

A quirky bayside town about 30 miles from San Francisco, Port Costa is off the beaten path and undergoing somewhat of a renaissance.

Latest Short Review:

Sheridan, Wyoming

On a prairie in the shadow of the Big Horn Mountains in wide-open north central Wyoming, Sheridan embodies the American West. It is safe, down to earth, full of practical folks and proud of its heritage. It is a great place to retire?

The Powderhorn: a Golf Community in Sheridan, Wyoming   

Elegant single family homes, a large clubhouse, plenty of golf and beautiful views are what bring retirees and others to The Powderhorn.

Latest Town Snapshots:

San Antonio, Florida

Slightly overgrown and near Lake Jovita, San Antonio has a rural quality, some fun festivals and a quiet way of life.

Tampa Bay Golf and Country Club: a Gated 55+ Community in San Antonio, Florida   

A large, gated community, Tampa Bay Golf and Country Club has single family homes, 27 holes of golf, three swimming pool, pet parks and more.

Pinehurst, North Carolina

Beautiful Pinehurst was originally designed to resemble an English village and today is a golf destination popular with vacationers and retirees.

Pinehurst Trace: a Wooded 55+ Community in Pinehurst, North Carolina   

With low maintenance brick homes nestled in the trees, Pinehurst Trace has a hushed quality. Amenities include a clubhouse, a swimming pool and more.

Latest In Depth Review:

Boone, North Carolina

Nestled in beautiful mountain scenery and once the stomping grounds of frontiersman Daniel Boone, growing Boone is home to Appalachian State University and has a nice downtown, fun festivals, academic events, outstanding outdoor recreation and more. It is a great retirement spot!

Latest Town Snapshots:

Ormond Beach, Florida

Once the home of John D. Rockefeller, Ormond Beach has a downtown riverwalk, an orange-tinted beach and is popular with "snowbirds."

Plantation Bay: an Amenity-Rich Community in Ormond Beach, Florida   

Large, gated and a favorite with baby boomers, Plantation Bay has 45 holes of golf, 10 tennis courts, resort-style pools and a variety of home styles.

Oak Harbor, Washington  

On the northern end of Whidbey Island, Oak Harbor is a waterfront hamlet with a cute downtown and authentic, weathered charm.

Smithfield, Virginia

The home of Smithfield Foods, Smithfield is known for its pig statues and beautiful Colonial, Federal, Georgian and Victorian architecture.

Church Square: a Cozy 55+ Community in Smithfield, Virginia   

A quiet development, Church Square has attached homes, tree-lined streets and a small clubhouse with a swimming pool.

Latest Short Review:

St. Simons, Georgia

Tucked on a barrier island off Georgia's southern coast, seductive St. Simons is known for its canopied lanes, understated elegance, rich history, long beaches and beautiful homes. It captivates nearly everyone, but is it a great place to retire?

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What is the Difference Between Average Home Price and Median Home Price?

When searching for a place to retire, housing costs are a top concern. So what is the difference between the average home price and the median home price? The average home price is determined by adding together all the prices of homes sold during a specific timeframe and dividing that amount by the number of homes sold. On the other hand, the median home price is the middle sales price of all the homes sold. In other words, a median price means that half of the homes sold at a price below the median and half sold at a price above the median.

How We Choose Great Places to Retire

When looking for great places to retire, we consider a number of factors, including cost of living, medical facilities, climate, transportation, crime rates, cultural amenities, educational amenities, shopping venues, infrastructure, recreational opportunities, housing options, the poverty rate and more. No one factor alone, except a high crime rate, a high poverty rate, population loss or crumbling infrastructure, will disqualify a town as a great retirement spot. We weigh all of the evidence to decide if a town has enough going for it to make it a top place to retire. We are not affiliated with any of the places that we review.

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